What is “Reformed?”

“What do you believe?  You have some different perspectives on things than I am used to”

Since I get this type of question from a lot of people outside of my circles I thought I would just post it here.  I don’t like labels but I also realize that they are needed in this fallen world – I suppose.  So I am …

I am a  Christian. :)

Ok.  Fine.  I am a “Reformed” christian. Now to the second question I keep getting asked…  What does it mean to be “Reformed?”

Well this is what it means to be reformed in a small nutshell:

  • to affirm the 5″Solas” of the Reformation. Sola Scriptura – Scripture Alone, Solus Christus – Christ Alone, Sola Gratia – Grace Alone
    Sola Fide – Faith Alone, Soli Deo Gloria – The Glory of God Alone
  • to affirm and promote a profoundly high view of the sovereignty of God.  That is….God is sovereign over all.
  • to affirm the doctrines of grace. That is, we view God as the author of salvation from beginning to end. Monergism not synergism (for those who understand what that means)
  • to affirm the great creeds of the historic, orthodox church. The Nicene creed, Athanasian creed and the Apostles creed.
  • to affirm the great confessions of the historic orthodox church. For me, specifically the 3 forms of unity.
  • to affirm the great covenants of Scripture and view those covenants as the means by which God interacts with His people and accomplishes His purposes in His creation and in salvation.
  • to take seriously the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus.  I affirm the primacy of evangelism as a calling of the church and of sharing the gospel for every believer.
  • I have a distinctly Christian world-view that permeates my entire life.  Everything I do, I do to the glory of God, but this is only by his grace and in his power! 🙂

Here is a link to the Confessional statements to which I adhere also known as the 3 Forms of Unity. Endorsing these confessions does not mean I believe that that these statements are inspired or on par with the bible in any way. I believe these are Scriptural documents expounding the great doctrines of the Bible, and do a good job of summarizing what it is I believe.

At the end of the day Christians are all over the map in their beliefs, even those who consider themselves Reformed are all over the map.  I do not claim to be a theologian, but I do know what I believe.  To put it very simply: I believe in Jesus Christ my only Saviour, I flee from sin and pursue righteousness, love the true God and my neighbour without turning to the right or left, and crucify my flesh and its works. Although great weakness remains in me, I will fight against it by the Spirit all the days of my life. I appeal constantly to the blood, suffering, death, and obedience of Jesus Christ, in whom I have forgiveness of my sins through faith in Him.

I hope that helps answer your questions. :)